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Wireless ultrasound scanner could save time and manpower

by Nancy Ryerson, Staff Writer | April 23, 2013
The Benchmark Bladder System
Health care professionals may not even need to know exactly where the bladder is to measure its volume, thanks to a new wireless scanner from the start-up company dBMEDx. The company hopes its first product, called the Benchmark Bladder System (BBS), will receive FDA clearance by this time next year.

The company announced on April 4 that it had raised $1.1 million through sale of common stock — funds that will be used to complete development for the BBS.

The BBS uses ultrasound technology to scan the bladder and calculate its volume. While similar technology already exists in the market, its creators say this device is easier to use and will require less training.

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"Most of the devices now, you have to hold it very, very still for a few seconds for it to get an accurate reading," dBMEDx CEO David Shine told DOTmed News. "Ours operates more in parallel — it collects data instantaneously, so it's less prone to movement."

Shine said the BBS is also less sensitive to where it's placed for the scan. As long as it's held against the lower belly, the device can find the bladder itself.

"As more and more of our care is being delivered by a wide range of medical professionals, some with less training than perhaps in the past, devices like this will allow them to give the same level of accuracy," said Shine.

Because the bladder is one of the last parts of the body to regain sensation once anesthesia wears off, bladder scanning is generally a final step before a patient leaves the hospital after a procedure. Volume scans ensure the bladder isn't obstructed or otherwise in need of draining.

Completing processes like that faster can help move patients out of hospitals more efficiently, Shine said.

"These are routine measurements that essentially get patients out of the hospital," said Shine. "Hospitals get paid a fixed amount for the procedure, so the sooner they get them out the more money they get to keep."

Over the next year, the company plans to finish commercial development and apply for FDA clearance.

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